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Offhand functionality

The ability to "dual-wield," or use the off-hand for an extra useable item, has been around since 1.9. In Java, it allows for many different beneficial situations. Until it's sudden, global removal (for cosmetics? Really?) yesterday, I don't think I've gone a day where I played Minecraft in any form and didn't use the offhand slot for something.

Things offhand is useful for:
  1. Building large projects. Offhand + hotbar = no stopping because you run out. When the stack in your main hand is used up, it automatically starts using the off-hand. This allows anyone with a scroll wheel or who is used to pressing number keys to switch to a new stack without momentarily stopping and possibly having to move back into position again.
  2. Building anything you might misclick. Hold the block you want to place in the off-hand, put the tool used to remove misplaced blocks in the main hand. When a block is misplaced, break it with the tool. Not as good for dirt, though, due to dirt paths from shovels.
  3. Planting large areas. Place a stack of seeds or crop to plant in the off-hand as well the hotbar. Does the same thing as with building larger projects - prevents running out and having to go back over somewhere after switching stacks.
  4. Actual dual-wielding. Since a bow is used, placing it in the off-hand allows the use of both a bow and a sword.
  5. Food, gaps, etc. Anything you eat or use can be in the offhand. Putting food there lets you eat as needed without going away from your tool or weapon.
  6. Totems of undying. Without a plugin or mod to change them, they have to be being held at the time of death. This can be done off-hand. Honestly, who is going around holding it in their main hand?
I use every single one of those at times. I especially use the first three. In my opinion, this functionality should never have been removed in the first place, least of all for a non-function like cosmetic/wearable items. I honestly don't even know what is meant by "will be replaced with a keystone" - what's a keystone even? - but if it requires some out-of-the-way effort it will still likely break a few of those. It's not even a new feature, either. It's been available for 5-6 years and started being developed an entire decade ago. Why not just make the cosmetics an appearance override or use whatever possible fix for them instead of breaking game features? While fun, cosmetic items are far less important and generally completely nonfunctional.
 

goossee

Moderator
Moderator
Water Sailor
Hey there, while I understand the concerns you have about offhand being disabled, I feel that a lot of these concerns would be more applicable to a far more traditional server, rather than ours or a lot of other survival servers. Most of the benefits granted are minor conveniences and the alternatives for each are a matter of a few seconds at most when it comes to hot bar switching for the listed purposes (extra blocks, food, tools, seeds). In regards to the concerns for dual wielding and totems, they're very uncommon accessories when it comes to server play and due to the nature of the ability to set home and with access /eback for ranked players, compounded by how relatively innocuous mobs are, dying within situations that a totem would indefinitely save you are far and few. Furthermore, dual wielding for bows and swords is also equally useless, for bows see no use in almost any aspect of the game other than the final isle, to kill dragons.

To your second statement about a keystone, the keystone will run the main command gui that you need for the realm that you are on (such as /k for kingdoms, /keystone (or warps) for asgard, and /is for skyblock) and is actually a very useful command that in the long run can save a decent amount of time and is quite beneficial to new players.

The final thing that should be addressed is that cosmetics and offhand cannot comfortably coexist. This would possible risk issues of players deleting valuable items (such as a vaultable tool) when equipping items, causing players to be upset about that, which can lead to a larger situation that would be entirely avoidable otherwise.

Hope you understand and that this helps,
-Goose
 
Most of the benefits granted are minor conveniences and the alternatives for each are a matter of a few seconds at most when it comes to hot bar switching for the listed purposes (extra blocks, food, tools, seeds).
I can't speak for other players (and fire at least has been dead today for some reason. Wonder if that's at all connected), but for me, this isn't really "minor" after a little while. "A few seconds" multiplied by 9 times per hotbar full, possibly more than once per layer, with several layers in an individual farm or other project. It adds up. But it's also more than the seconds of switching items, as most builds and planting involve moving at the same time. This means that there are the "few seconds" to notice that it's stopped occurring, the same few seconds to move back into position, and the few seconds of switching items. Let's say it takes 5 seconds each, but use a full inventory (4x the hotbar). That rate still leads to a full minute loss per layer. Considering I can plant an entire layer of wheat in about 5-6 minutes, this is actually pretty significant. More importantly, however, all of these things also throw off the rhythm of the project being completed. It's not just the "inconvenience" of the lost time, but the frustration of being thrown off. Over, and over, and over again.

The final thing that should be addressed is that cosmetics and offhand cannot comfortably coexist. This would possible risk issues of players deleting valuable items (such as a vaultable tool) when equipping items, causing players to be upset about that, which can lead to a larger situation that would be entirely avoidable otherwise.

Hope you understand and that this helps,
Understand? Yeah, I guess. Helps? No, not really. This is the type of thing that would have had me not even join the server most likely, and has me highly conflicted given how much I like other things and respect and admire the staff so far. But how I handle that is for me to figure out, and I don't have many suggestions on how to solve the problem with cosmetics. For me, cosmetics are never more than a fun little side thing anywhere.
 

LobCutie

Dedicated
The reason offhand was disabled is because pvp mechanics were changed back to 1.8. You can't have both (from what I understand) and 1.8 pvp is just much better - for duels, lps, pvp, isles, exp, killing mobs. It wasn't disabled entirely for cosmetics. Cosmetics now go in the offhand because it is disabled anyway and so you can look stylish while building/pvping/etc with your main hand.


I also used the offhand to build farms and such but I'm okay with it being gone because I'd rather these pvp mechanics. If the sole reason it was disabled was for cosmetics, I might have more of a problem with it like you.
 
It being part of moving to 1.8 pvp would make perfect sense. Whether it's just all one plugin without easy settings or a balance thing, either one.

But if so, the changlogs made that less clear. Pvp change was mentioned, then less than an hour later "offhand disabled (reserved for wearables..." was announced. Honestly, had I not read both and them being separate, I might have assumed the same. But that absolutely made me think it could have been kept but was disabled for the cosmetics.